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  • Writer's pictureGina

Sesame Seared Tuna

Oh Tuna. My love affair with this ever so popular fish dates back to my elementary years. During this time I went through 2 distinctive phases. One where I strictly ate my tuna straight from the can. And two, where I requested it made with a more mayo to fish ratio. I know, you are probably both chuckling and gagging. But hey, at least I was a kid who ate it! My kiddos....yeah right, I’d be just as successful plating sticks in front of them.

But that’s neither here nor there. The important thing to take away from that rant is that I‘ve liked tuna for quite some time. Even into my teen and college years, I found that short can of protein to be damn good atop a toasted English muffin at least twice a week. Quick, easy, tasty, filling and cheap......adjectives all 18-25 year olds use to describe their cooking style.

But alas, I am no longer in that demographic. These days, I enjoy my tuna a bit different. Some would even say a bit more sophisticated. As the title here states, seared tuna is what I’m referring to. To me, it doesn’t even come close to what I ate as a kid or twenty-something year old. A whole different meat from an entirely different fish is really what goes through my mind. It is so tender and delicate. The sesame coating does a spot on job both adding texture and highlighting the velvety meat inside. Not to mention, it‘s a head turner of a dish. Black and white seeds studded against bright red steaks, even if you don’t like to eat it, you for sure don’t mind looking at it. #foodgawker

Hearty enough for a dinner yet perfect for a light appetizer, I also find this recipe super versatile. Along some seasoned rice and a vegetable, it makes for a delicious and healthy mid-week meal. Or sliced thin and plated with some dipping bowls of soy sauce, it is a definite way to wow your guests. Honestly, I’m not sure which I prefer more, either way the tuna is 100% addicting.

So there it is, my life long tie to Mr. Tuna. And even though it started out very simple, at times sloppy, of course priced reasonably, and now fancy shmancy-it has always had a spot in my heart, as well as plate. Enjoy....

Sesame Seared Tuna

Serves: 2 for dinner, 4-6 for appetizer plating


2 4-5 oz tuna steaks, about 2 inches thick

1 C untoasted white sesame seeds

1 C black sesame seeds

2 egg whites

Salt and Pepper to taste

2 TBS avocado oil

  1. Combine the black and white sesame seeds in shallow bowl. Set aside.

  2. Season all sides of the tuna steaks with salt and pepper.

  3. In a medium sized bowl, whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks. This takes about 5-8 minutes and your arm will be sore!

  4. Using a brush, apply a even layer of the whipped egg whites over the tuna flesh, all sides. Or you can dip it on each side, but be sure to drip excess off.

  5. Roll the sides and all the exposed tuna into the sesame seed shallow bowl. Use your hands to pack down the seeds so they stick to flesh. Set aside each steak on a clean plate.

  6. Heat oil in a large cast iron or non-stick sauté pan over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Do not let the oil get too hot so that it is smoking as it will burn the seeds!

  7. Cook one steak at a time. Set the tuna steak in the oil while you tilt the pan a bit to redistribute the oil around the fish. Sear on one side for 1-3 minutes. This really comes down to how well you prefer your tuna cooked: less time= more rare, more time= more well done. Carefully flip the steak and sear the other side for 1-3 minutes. Using a tong, roll the steak along the pan so that the edges get a slight sear as well.

  8. Place on serving platter and slice thin.

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